A highly efficient directional molecular white-light emitter driven by a continuous-wave laser diode

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Science  10 Jun 2016:
Vol. 352, Issue 6291, pp. 1301-1304
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaf6138

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Converting infrared into visible

There is a constant societal drive to develop new light sources that are both efficient and environmentally benign. Rosemann et al. developed an amorphous material that emits a broadband (warm white) spectrum of light upon excitation with an infrared laser via highly nonlinear processes. Inorganic nanocrystals form the core of their material and are coated with organic ligands on the surface. When excited with infrared light, nonlinear optical processes cause the material to emit broadband white light.

Science, this issue p. 1301


Tailored light sources have greatly advanced technological and scientific progress by optimizing the emission spectrum or color and the emission characteristics. We demonstrate an efficient spectrally broadband and highly directional warm-white-light emitter based on a nonlinear process driven by a cheap, low-power continuous-wave infrared laser diode. The nonlinear medium is a specially designed amorphous material composed of symmetry-free, diamondoid-like cluster molecules that are readily obtained from ubiquitous resources. The visible part of the spectrum resembles the color of a tungsten-halogen lamp at 2900 kelvin while retaining the superior beam divergence of the driving laser. This approach of functionalizing energy-efficient state-of-the-art semiconductor lasers enables a technology complementary to light-emitting diodes for replacing incandescent white-light emitters in high-brilliance applications.

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